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Species Profile: Oriental Small Claw Otter    
Aonyx cinerea    

        Both breeding pairs of Oriental Small Claw Otters stay together after breeding and help raise the litter of two to six pups. The pups may then stay with their parents which forms the nucleus of a small social group.

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       Pretty tiny. From the head to the body it is 406 to 635 mm. and the tail is 246 to 350 mm., making the total length 652 to 939 mm.

        The feet on the Oriental Small Claw Otter are narrow. They are only webbed to the last joint. The claws are blunt and short.

        The hair is velvety and the guardhairs are normally 12 to 14 mm. long, the underfur is 6 to 9 mm. long.

        The color is like a burnt light brown to a darker dingier brown. The throat is obviously brighter than the rest of the body being white to gray in color. This color is sharply separated at the head from the rest of the body, but at the chest it blends into the darker color.


        The nose of the Oriential Small Claw Otter is like a trapezoid that has a point at the longest flattest side. The nostrils are located in the bottom side parts of the nose.

        They occur throughout most of Asia in freshwater wetlands and mangrove swamps.

Distribution and Population
        The Oriential Small Claw Otter is found at the lower part of India and China. It lives also in Indonesia, New Guinea, and some of the countries under China.

        The Oriential Small Claw Otter eats crustaceans, molluscs and small fish.

Other Names

Also called:Asian Short Clawed Otter, Oriental Short Clawed Otter, Malaysian Small Clawed Otter

Spanish: Nutria cenicienta, Nutria inerme asiatica
French: Loutre Cendree
German: ZwergOtter
Italian: Lontra nana, Lontra seza unghie
Other scientific names

Amblonyx cinerea
Micraonyx cinerea

Quick links:

Fact Sheet from American Zoological Society (AZA) and Species Survival Plan

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